Old, what does that mean? What is your definition for it? I am fast approaching the BIG 60, and as much as I really haven’t felt “old” so far in my 59+ years, except for occasional memory loss (standing in the kitchen wondering what I am doing there?), a few aches and pains (when did it get difficult to get up from a kneeling position?), and needing reader glasses in several places (was the print always that small?), I am thinking that most would consider me old, especially those younger than me! I was taught at a young age if I didn’t know what something meant I needed to look it up in the dictionary, so of course I did, “old” habit. I just happened to be in Bing, not Google, as in “Google It” (when did that become the search term?) and Bing’s definition is:
- having lived long: having lived for many years in comparison with others
- originating years ago: made, produced, or originating many years ago and still in existence
- senior: showing physical or mental characteristics sometimes associated with long life
I have to say these three definitions do fit, and I am not offended by them, nothing negative, just truth.
May is Older Americans Month and it is sponsored each May by the U.S. Administration for Community Living (ACL). This year’s theme is Safe Today. Healthy Tomorrow. The focus is on injury prevention, including fire, motor vehicle, and consumer product safety; improper use of medicine; and more. At A Woman’s Place (AWP) we focus on our vision and mission, which are: envisioning a society where all individuals are safe in their relationships and can flourish and in being a community-based social change organization committed to the empowerment of women and to ending intimate and domestic violence for all.
Abuse Later in Life occurs when an older person is subjected to a pattern of coercive behaviors used to gain and maintain power and control perpetrated by a partner, family member, or someone with whom the older adult has an ongoing relationship with. It is the intersection between elder abuse and domestic violence. We believe Older American’s have the right to dignity, respect, and safety.
I was raised to respect and treat my elders with dignity. Being an elder myself now (yes, I said it!), and as one of the oldest working at AWP, I also believe we should ensure their safety.
Be Safe Today. Healthy Tomorrow. AND Flourish Everyday!
Jacalyn A. Hartzell
P.S. It is also Teen Self-Esteem Month and next week one of our teens will be blogging about it.